Week #22 (10/27 & 30)

This week your basket contains: cucumbers, sweet peppers, savoy cabbage,onions, spinach, beets, FLORENCE FENNEL, broccoli, and carrots.

A NOTE ABOUT PAYMENTS: This month we have received several payments in cash that came to us in envelopes with no information identifying the payer (our driver does not write names on the envelopes).  IF YOU HAVE SENT US CASH PLEASE LET US KNOW AND TELL US THE AMOUNT SO WE CAN CREDIT YOUR ACCOUNT.  Thanks.

FENNEL TIPS

Here is how you prepare Florence fennel: wash and trim fennel stalks to the point where they meet the top and sides of bulbs.  Save the stalks and leaves for flavoring and garnishes. Fennel can be eaten raw, but our favorite way to prepare it simply is to slice it in half through the root end so that the resulting halves are wider than they are thick.  We then throw it on the grill or under the broiler with a brushing of olive oil. Cook until crisp-tender and slightly browned.   It is great with fish, very low-calorie, and has an anise flavor.  These are some of our favorite fennel recipes:

CUCUMBER & FENNEL WITH ORANGE-MINT DRESSING

1 cucumber, peeled and diced

1 fennel bulb, trimmed and finely slivered

1 Granny Smith apple, sliced

2 tsp. lemon juice

2 Tbsp. toasted walnuts, chopped

For the vinaigrette:

2 Tbsp. orange juice

2 Tbsp. walnut oil

1 Tbsp. fresh mint

1 Tbsp. cilantro

1/8 tsp. paprika

salt and pepper to taste

Combine salad ingredients except walnuts in a salad bowl and gently mix. In a small bowl, whisk all vinaigrette ingredients until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper and pour over salad. Serve immediately or marinate, covered in fridge, for 1-2 hours. Before serving, toss and garnish with toasted nuts. From Yamuna’s Table by Yamuna Devi.

FAST SAUTÉ OF FENNEL AND MUSHROOMS

1 large fennel (with leaves)

1/2 lb whole mushrooms

2 Tbsp. butter

1 Tbsp. olive oil

salt & pepper

Thinly slice fennel, discarding any hard core.  Mince 1/2 cup of the leaves and set aside.  Slice mushrooms to same thickness as fennel.  Heat 1 Tbsp. butter and oil in a sauté pan.  Add mushrooms and cook over medium high heat until brown.  Remove and set aside.  Add remaining butter and fennel to pan.  Cook over medium heat until softened but still crunchy.  Add mushrooms, stir together.  Season with salt and pepper and stir in minced fennel leaves. (From The Victory Garden Cookbook)

BROWNED CABBAGE WITH FENNEL AND ONIONS

1 medium head green cabbage

2 1/2 medium onions

1/2 cup vegetable oil

5 fenugreek seeds

1/2 tsp. cumin seeds

1/4 tsp. brown mustard seeds

1/2 tsp. fennel seeds

2 garlic cloves

A 1 1/2 piece of fresh ginger

1 tomato or a few Tbsp. tomato sauce

1/2 tsp. turmeric

1 fresh long hot chili (optional)

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. garam masala

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

Cut cabbage into quarters and shred as thinly as possible.  Peel two of the onions and cut them in half lengthwise, then slice into thin half circles.  Heat 5 Tbsp. of the oil in a wide heavy-bottomed over medium heat and add fenugreek, cumin, mustard, and fennel seeds.  As the seeds start sizzling and changing color (about 10 seconds), put in sliced onions.  Fry over medium heat for about 3 minutes, then add the shredded cabbage. Cook over fairly low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. The cabbage and onion will brown slightly.  Meanwhile, peel and coarsely chop the remaining 1/2 onion, the garlic and the ginger. Put these and the tomato/tomato sauce into a blender.  Blend to a paste.  In a skillet, heat the remaining 3 Tbsp. of oil.  Add the paste from the blender, turmeric and thinly sliced chile.  Fry, stirring all the time, for 8-10 minutes.  If necessary add 1 tsp. warm water at a time to prevent sticking.  When the cabbage has cooked 30 minutes, add this fried paste to the pot, along with the salt, garam masala, and lemon juice.  Stir and cook for another 5 minutes.  Adapted from Spice Kitchen by Madhur Jaffrey.

Advertisements